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Author Topic: Austin to The Old Dominion on a 155cc Scooter  (Read 699 times)
Virginian
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« Reply #30 on: May 14, 2018, 09:49:43 PM »















I love me some Moto Guzzi's!












They were running Porches on the track today and the museum overlooks the track.


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Virginian
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« Reply #31 on: May 14, 2018, 09:50:19 PM »
























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Virginian
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« Reply #32 on: May 14, 2018, 09:50:55 PM »


















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Virginian
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« Reply #33 on: May 14, 2018, 09:51:26 PM »








Ugliest Harley evar! imo


The holy grail!




Love this scooter!


XRC!








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Virginian
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« Reply #34 on: May 14, 2018, 09:52:26 PM »

Isn't the Moto Guzzi just gorgeous!


















These scooters were designed to pack up like a suitcase so you could transport it on a small plane. Pretty cool!


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Virginian
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« Reply #35 on: May 14, 2018, 09:52:57 PM »

I will own one of these someday!























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Virginian
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« Reply #36 on: May 14, 2018, 09:54:37 PM »












(almost done)

Rotax powered HD!













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Virginian
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« Reply #37 on: May 14, 2018, 09:54:59 PM »

I stopped for one more gas stop before I quit for the day. Yep, I'm in the south. My peoples!


Broke 1,000 miles on the scoot.


Got her tucked away at the hotel.


A well deserved jack & coke.


By the numbers...


(more to come tomorrow)
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« Reply #38 on: May 14, 2018, 10:04:02 PM »

This is an awesome thread. It is one of the most entertaining I've seen lately with all the great photos. Very nice job sir. All of you on this site should view this thread.
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Virginian
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« Reply #39 on: May 14, 2018, 10:45:48 PM »

This is an awesome thread. It is one of the most entertaining I've seen lately with all the great photos. Very nice job sir. All of you on this site should view this thread.

Silver,

Thanks for stopping by and reading.

Eric
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Virginian
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« Reply #40 on: May 15, 2018, 12:36:46 AM »

In Georgia taking a breather. I'm close!

I'm finally off the damn freeways and enjoying the ride. Just beautiful country as I weave me way to the mountains.

I pulled over at McGag-me's as sidewards rain has hammered me for the last two hours. It's building up on the roads and starting to hydroplane a bit. Assessing the situation.

After about a 45 minute break the terrible rain storms seemed to have calmed down so I'll press on a bit.

(more to come)
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Virginian
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« Reply #41 on: May 15, 2018, 12:56:20 AM »

Here's the point where the trip went south in a hurry...

Okay, so I make my way onto the BRPW about 4:30, figured I'd get in an hour or twoís riding. Had 1/3 tank of gas. Itís all up hill so Iím running out of gas quickly.

I decide to turn back as the nearest gas station is 18 miles away. 15 miles into going to get gas I realize I left my backpack at one of the lookouts while I was dealing with resolving the gas issue. Oh fuck! So I turn around and go back to where I left it.

So I finally make it back itís dark out now, pouring rain and my back pack was still there! Hell to the fuck yeah! A couple of gals were there cleaning up vomit...

They were niceÖ I mumbled something about Iíll be damned thereís still honest peeps in the world.

So standing in the rain theyíre taking pics of each other so I offer to take their pic. Take a couple of love bird shots and off I go in the dark in the rainÖ. I'm wet, cold, tired and super annoyed at myself.

So Iím cruising at 25 to 30 mph limping to the gas station. A branch falls directly in front of me on the road. No time to stop on wet roads so I jump it as best I can with the 2 seconds I had to react. The scoot shrugged it right off. The branch was 4Ē in diameter.

Iím white knuckled, Iím cold, Iím tired, Iím on fumes and now Iím jumping logs. Perfect!

So I finally make to the gas station. Scoot holds 2 gallons. It took 1.9 to fill. I ask mini mart dude hitting on Honey Boo Boo in the next pump over if there a motel. Sure 2 miles up the road. Cool!

I finish gassing up and put my wet shit back on for the 14th darn time and head to the hotel. Sold out! So is the other 3 around the same area.
Gal says let me call aroundÖ Iím standing there dripping thereís literally a pool of water where Iím standing. There two rooms left at xyz joint up the road and hands me the phone. The phone starts squealing and the gals says it's from my metal snap on my collar so I fart around with trying ,different ways to hold the phone and I can finally talk to the other hotel and make a reservation.

Soooo I put my wet gear on for the 15th darn time and get on the freeway, in the pouring rain, visibility is still crap and find this place. Iím in the room, went to make a bourbon, the ice maker out of ice. Perfect!

Ok, rant over...

The upswing is I got my backpack back, I didn't run out of gas, Bella is a log hopp'n machine, I'm safe and sound drying off in a hotel.

I'll post some pics in a few when I get my color of vision back.

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Virginian
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« Reply #42 on: May 15, 2018, 12:56:44 AM »

Day 4   369 miles - 1,364 miles total

First some random shots.



Old school soda pop


I pull into the first overlook.





Here's a short 9 second clip of the sounds of the river. For me it was a surreal moment with all the hustle and bustle to get here to hear just nature doing it's thing.
https://vimeo.com/214266133


A little further down the road there was a cool kayak area with an obstacle course paddling upstream from side to side to go through the gates. Lots of folks enjoying the river today despite being overcast.

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« Reply #43 on: May 15, 2018, 01:04:26 AM »

I cross over into NC, yes these are out of order but I'm too tired to edit.


Came across this... Size matters? It's not the size, it's what you do with the size! ;)


OooOooo! I'm getting close!


Then the skies open up and it's getting really bad. I navigated the bad weather till I just didn't feel good about it and took the next exit. It happen to have a McD's in a gas station deal. Look at the water poring off the awning over the pumps. I traversed 6"+ water accumulated on the road in many areas.


This is my "Eric's fun meter is pegged look."


Things lighten up a bit so I venture on. This is where I should have thrown in the towel and just gotten a room..  It's 4:30 PM now and I find the Welcome center which is open till 5 PM.


Yep, locked up and no one home...




So I start creep'n north on the BRPW, drizzling but not real bad.



First overlook.





Next one.




The tunnels.


The overlook where I left my backpack.

Love this photo!




Actually it was 1.83 gallons of gas when I got fuel .


That's all I got for today folks. The weather is supposed to be worse tomorrow. We shall see what life brings tomorrow...
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« Reply #44 on: May 15, 2018, 01:06:30 AM »

Thanks for the tour through the museum.  Certainly a destination worthy of a visit.  You might suggest having extra camera batteries all fully charged when visiting.  That was amazing and will be looked through more than a few times in an attempt to appreciate what you presented here.    I once visited the Museum of Transportation near Belfast, Northern Ireland where there was an extensive collection of anything that provided transportation.  Anything from steam locomotives to Harrier Jump-Jets. But only a few motorcycles and scooters.  It was an impressive place however, this place blows that away.  But 72 mph on a freeway riding a Vespa ???  Thanks for the time you took to share all of your pictures with us.
Mike.
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Virginian
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« Reply #45 on: May 15, 2018, 01:11:29 AM »

Thanks for the tour through the museum.  Certainly a destination worthy of a visit.  You might suggest having extra camera batteries all fully charged when visiting.  That was amazing and will be looked through more than a few times in an attempt to appreciate what you presented here.    I once visited the Museum of Transportation near Belfast, Northern Ireland where there was an extensive collection of anything that provided transportation.  Anything from steam locomotives to Harrier Jump-Jets. But only a few motorcycles and scooters.  It was an impressive place however, this place blows that away.  But 72 mph on a freeway riding a Vespa ???  Thanks for the time you took to share all of your pictures with us.
Mike.

Mike,

Those museum pics were the driving force of me posting a year old ride report as I hope they are a treat for some folks. Many thanks for your kinds words as I am a horrific story teller and photographer.. I would love to see a museum in your neck of the woods in Nova Scotia let alone Belfast!

I'll finish this trip up here soon.

Again, thank you.

Eric
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« Reply #46 on: May 16, 2018, 02:18:37 AM »

Whelp, here's whats headed my way. Even if I just stay put for a day it's supposed to get worse tomorrow.
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« Reply #47 on: May 16, 2018, 02:19:37 AM »

I'm going to try and outrun the storm and stay ahead of it. Maybe pick up the BRPW further up. Better to enjoy it another day then to have another day like yesterday.

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« Reply #48 on: May 16, 2018, 02:20:34 AM »

Crossed into VA at Fancy gap. Bad lightening storms and going to wait it out a bit   Shutting down glympse. About 200 miles under my belt in THE worst storms I've ever ridden in.
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Virginian
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« Reply #49 on: May 16, 2018, 02:21:42 AM »

Powering through the storms on the mighty Bella ;)

I'm at my families safe and sound. Bourbon in hand and frozen. I'll post what I can here in a bit.

One teaser video! The downswing of Glympse is your family knows when you're rolling up.  :redface:

Arriving from TX to VA in 5 days on a brand new Vespa 946 04/22/17 on Vimeo
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« Reply #50 on: May 16, 2018, 02:24:19 AM »

Day 5  411 miles - 1,775 miles total

So I wake up from the overpriced fleabag motel that I was happy to get last night hoping for a better today. I check the weather and there's a nasty front coming. So I scratch the BRPW, load up and try to outrun the storm.



This tale has gone from:

- Stop and smell the roses tour
- To: War of the Roses tour
- To: Run Forest Run

https://youtu.be/x2-MCPa_3rU

The scene at the flea bag motel, note the nice wrecked cars lined up that I was happy to get.


So I start blasting down the freeway to beat this storm. (as best I can on a scooter) I pull off in Galax, VA for gas and it was about to get real nasty out. This is what I have ridden in for the last 200 miles but when it started lightening and thunderstorms, I'm out!
https://vimeo.com/214366111




So I sat this one out for a bit and got a bite to eat. Nothing but gross food in this quick stop...


After about 45 minutes wait I see a pocket in the storm and suit up to punch my way through the storm to find this pocket. I finally get to it and surf that for quite a bit missing the really nasty weather. This pic was the next gas stop in Salem, VA.



I roll up to my families in Front Royal to seek shelter and warm up as the temps were 48*F/8.9*C, factor in soaking wet, terrible winds and wind chill factor... It sucked....

That bad news about using Glympse is your family know exactly when you're rolling up.

Here's a short video of my arrival.
https://vimeo.com/214344866

The trip is essentially over but I'll pad the stats a little more when I make it home to Spotsylvania later today.

Total miles on the odometer.


Total for the day.


(more to come)
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Virginian
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« Reply #51 on: May 16, 2018, 02:25:06 AM »

I have roughly two more posts to contribute to this ride report.

 - Finish up the ride report, provide stats, cheers & jeers
 - Write up on my gear that worked and didn't work

I just rode home from Front Royal to Spotsy, roughly another 78 miles and you know what? It wasn't raining! Cold but no rain.

First a few pics from some of my favorite spots on the way home.







And Bella being introduced to my XR1200


Stats:




Day 6 78 miles - 1,853 miles total Yeah, I'm a numbers guy. (the nav is showing a little less as I didn't use it to venture out for supper)
 - Max speed 72 mph
 - Average speed 49 mph
 - Seat time 36 hours
 - 23 fuel fill ups
 - Average mpg 60.8
 - Best mpg 74.9
 - 31 gallons of gas burned
 - Fuel cost $89.49
 - Average fill up cost $3.89
 - Average Price per gallon $2.87




Amazing moments:

 - About an hour after I left the dealership in Austin I was riding along with traffic and there was this old fellow on the side of the road selling
   watermelons. As I passed by and he made eye contact with me his face lit up like a Christmas Tree and had the greatest smile. He waved hello to
   me with such enthusiasm!I don't know what provoked it but it was a warm fuzzy for me.
 - Somewhere on I10 I saw my first Armadillo. It was road kill Tango Uniform (tits up) but still it was the first one I've ever seen in my life. One of
    many in TX, LA, MS that I saw.
 - Somewhere on I10 (I10 just went on and on) I saw a turtle crossing the road. I said to myself, dammit turn around so I did and ran across I10
    fetched him and gave him a fighting chance in life. A fellow can never have too many karma points banked. This was 1 of 3 turtles I saved. No,
    I'm not a tree hugg'n kind of guy but I felt compelled...
 - I met many folks I'm proud to call my friends
 - Many 'twinkies' i.e. young gals felt the need to film me or take a pic of me riding down the road. I'm quite sure I'm on a couple of FB pages being
    laughed at by other 'twinkettes"! I gave each and every one of the a hardy wave.
 - The euphoria of traveling almost 2/3rds of the U.S. on a small scooter. I'm overwhelmed with pride and self satisfaction and words cannot
    describe. An experience that I have had many times on a m/c but doing so on a scooter was empowering.
 - In MS I'm scoot'n along and two HD riders rolled up next to me, full pirate outfit, jackets no sleeves, tatts showing, and had their best mean look     
    on their faces. You know the one they practice in the mirror? Riding next to me I look over trough my iridium blue visor, nod my head a couple of
    times with approval and give them the metal death horns sign. They both busted out laughing and gave me the thumbs up and motored on. In
    my mind they got it, a man/woman on two wheels in the wind. 
 - I figured I would get a lot of questions on this trip as it unfolded so I printed up some business cards on my PC that directed them to this thread
   and others on different forums I haunt. Many wanted to follow my journey and it was really  slick way to share that information. Btw, I ran out of
   cards to give out after I printed 50...
 - Barber Museum! Go! Nuff said.
 - The mighty Vespa 946 proved to be stone cold reliable and not once hiccuped or skipped a beat! Giusto!
 - Glympse! I'm going to get a little long winded on this topic. What a joy to share my trip virtually and in real time. I chose to do this for a couple of
   reasons. For safety, as I figured there would be a
   quite a few viewers that knew exactly where I was at should I need help. Many folks wrote me saying; hey! my brothers/dad/mom/etc lives right
   there. I know in my heart they would help or reach
   out if I needed it. What Glypmse manifested into was a whole different animal. I had on average 130 to 150 viewers tracking on my journey. They
   seemed to really enjoy being in the know in real time and somehow made my ride report more compelling. My loved ones adored being able to
   know where I was at and it gave them a little piece of mind in a small way. It's a free app, don't leave home without it!

Jeers:
 - The lions share of the trip was in the pouring driving rain. We can't predict this stuff so all you can do is adapt and overcome, which I did. Mother
   Nature pounded me and Bella 3 of the 5 days I was on the road which drastically cut into my miles per day I wanted to achieve of 500 leaving lots
   of time to explore the BRPW.
 - Cancelling the whole BRPW. This was heart breaking as I hammered through so many areas I wanted to explore but didn't have the time so in a
   way I put all my eggs in one basket only to have
    Mother Nature smash the basket.
 - Food, I rarely got to enjoy a nice meal as by the time I got to the hotel there was not much near for restaurants. Again, I'm sure I'd reply
   differently if I got to ride the entire BRPW...
 - I'm not a fan of showing my mug on the 'net. If I do it's only to share a basic emotion that I'm experiencing.
 - On the last leg of the trip it was just drizzling and very windy. I got behind this one semi that I swear he veered off the road onto the rumble
    strips that had water pooled in each divot throwing
    spray on me. If I'm lying I'm dying this happened 50+ times. 
 - The fleabag hotel... The next room over a dude was pounding his gal in a good way. The bad news is the headboard backed up to my wall. So I
    banged on the wall and yelled, "Hey! Move the bed back a little or hurry the f*** up and have a happy ending! My scooter and I are trying to
    rest!" I heard a soft conversation and they both busted out laughing. hehe

Random thoughts:

When I write about anything, ride reports, my builds, etc I just tend to write as it happens. To me you capture the feeling or tone of what's going on. If the situation is bad, tell it like it is. I can't stand reading anything that has been filtered and is full of unicorns pooping rainbows. Tell the truth and nothing but the truth. I try hard to provide documentation that supports what I'm seeing, feeling or experiencing. In essence, don't candy coat your reports, speak the truth and speak from your heart. Just my 2 cents...

So in closing...

Mea Culpa

To all my friends that wanted to see the BRPW pictures. I tried my best and failed in epic fashion. With a little luck later on this summer I'll have another go with Bella.

Eric

Life is short, enjoy the ride!

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« Reply #52 on: May 16, 2018, 02:25:58 AM »

I think it's imperative to share what gear worked and what did not under the circumstances that your journey put your gear through. So I'll share a few tips about my gear in hopes that it helps another traveler. I should mention that I'm cheap so I tend to buy last years stuff on close outs.

Gear:

Let's start with my helmet. The most crucial part of my gear to me. I'm a gear whore and have 8 helmets. Why did I choose my AGV for this trip? Simply put, it provided the most safety and the least noise levels that I've experienced. This particular helmet has about 75,000 miles on it and is getting tired. As it has never let me down it performed magnificently.

This helmet is/was from their high end GT-Tech line, Pista GP is their new name for 2017 helmet line. Back then it was roughly $1,000 but I bought it on sale for $800. Also I'm a huge Rossi fan! So try to stick with the best fitting helmet brands that offer the best protection. Shoei, Arai, AGV, to name a few. Remember, it's all you have when your head hits the road at 70 mph.



My jacket is a REV'IT! Shield Jacket. About $239 TMD, waterproof with minimal venting, pocket for back protector, attaches to my britches. It did its job very well and was good choice for this trip. I stayed dry for roughly 8 hours of riding in the rain, after that water was creeping down my neck. It's cheap, waterproof and gets the job done. I'm not a fan of having membrane layers to zip in and out. It has a zip out liner for cold riding. This jacket is a very poor choice for summer/hot riding as it truly fails in the venting department. Fall-Winter-Spring is where it's at.
https://www.revzilla.com/motorcycle/revit-shield-jacket


My britches are REV'IT! Sands 2 on close out. These pants have gortex membrane, zip in thermal liner and armor. Yes, I hate the membrane but I just leave it in permanently and forget about it. It too has minimal venting. They stayed waterproof about the same time, 8 hours of driving hard rain. After that water started to seep into my crotch area from the belt line. I want to say I paid about $180 tmd. The pockets are not waterproof so beware what you place in them.


My boots are el cheapo AeroMoto Renegade Waterproof Motorcycle Boots. At $69 U.S. they fall into the disposable category. Use them and toss them when they show signs of giving up the ghost. They are rock solid waterproof during all bad weather conditions. Seriously, these rock for the dollar!
http://www.compacc.com/p/aeromoto-renegade-waterproof-motorcycle-boots


My backpack is a Alpinestars Orbit Backpack. I didn't skimp here as I need it to be absolute waterproof keeping my gear and electronics dry which it did flawlessly. It has a lip much like a dry bag that you fold over 3 times and snap it closed. I should mention the outside pockets are not waterproof. It house a bladder if hydration is your thing. It's not mine, if I'm thirsty I just pull over. I have no use for carrying heavy liquids on my back. It also comes with a laptop sleeve that Velcros inside. I didn't use it as the sleeve used up precious cargo space. Again, stone cold reliable under the worst of conditions. This will be my luggage when I travel on the XR.
https://www.revzilla.com/motorcycle/alpinestars-orbit-backpack



When I long distance ride invariably my ass hurts bad. About the 2nd or 3rd day I switch to these britches. (not in the habit of showing my under britches but in the spirit of helping others) These help quite a bit and will net you a few more days of riding with a little less pain. Yes, you look like you have a load in your pants but m/c gear doesn't make you like you have issues in one form or another, The key (to me) for underwear is no seams on your backside. Just replacing your normal under britches with no seam undies is a game changer. Check outdoor stores like REI or the like. This pair is made by Dainese and aren't made anymore. Bicycle shops have many options here as well.



My intent was to take some short riding movies on the BRPW, I use a GoPro Hero Session. I paid $180 for mine but I've seen them cheaper. No movies this trip but maybe next one? Love this mini cam! Waterproof with no exoskeleton plastic case to waterproof it. It can be operated via your smartphone via Bluetooth. Here's a cheesy example of a quick clip I took last summer.
https://vimeo.com/170384249


Lastly my Kreiga US-20 Drybag. Wow, these bags just work on so many levels. It comes with all the attachments to attach to your bike or bike rack. Snap off and on with ease. 100% waterproof, very flexible as far as stacking other Kreiga packs on top or on the sides like luggage panniers. They make many sizes and this IS my go to bag for many years and has never ever failed. It's a bargain for $139. Get one, you won't regret it! If I had the OEM rack on the XR1200 I would have a US-30 ans a US-20 stacked for 50 liters of storage which is more than enough as I'm a minimalist traveler. I kept my MacBook air, all chargers, paperwork, and anything heavy in this bag filled to the brim. The bag cinches up like a compression sack.



Mophie waterproof smartphone case. It's waterproof, fits my iPhone 6+, 70% more battery backup and just works. 99% of all my pics are done with my iPhone. It must be waterproof as its the only thing I keep in my pants or jacket because in case of an off items dig into your body as your tumbling and cause more damage to you. On sale $69 tmd.
https://www.amazon.com/mophie-juice-pack-iPhone-600mAh/dp/B00TE8MZJS/ref=sr_1_1?s=wireless&ie=UTF8&qid=1493063293&sr=1-1&keywords=mophie+iphone+6+plus


Ram ball mount. I have one on every bike I own and for $17 I can mount my nav, iPhone or camera using Products. They come with mant different length screws for your triple tree or in this case on Bella the mirror stem. Shop around, I usually get them for $12. I use an Ram x-claw to hold my phone.
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005J43I56/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o01_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1


Held Air N Dry Gloves, they work on many levels. Slip your hand under the membranne you have air gloves for hot days. Slip your hand in the waterproof top part of the glove and my hands stay dray all day. The squeegee on the index finger is a must have. I bet it used it 1,000 times this past week. $250
https://www.revzilla.com/motorcycle/held-air-n-dry-gloves


Lastly my TomTom Rider 400, I freaki'n love this thing. It pairs up to my phone, Tyre maps are so much easier (for me) to use then Garmin's basecamp. I can play my music, hear the nav and make changes on the fly. On this trip I did get some water condensation that I need to address with TomTom. We'll see how that goes...


I normally carry a dock kit that I use for hunting and m/c trips. It always ready to go but since to a fly and ride the airlines require all you liquids be in a clear plastic bag, this trip a Ziplock bag was my dock kit.


Those are my cornerstones for traveling long distance, I hope it helps someone. The only other advice I have is use moisture wicking, quick drying shirts. They  compress really small when packing, wash them in the sink and hang to dry, in the morning they're bone dry. You can do a trip carrying 2 shirts rotating. Catch the sales on leftovers from last year. Here's an example.
https://www.rei.com/product/883145/nike-cool-fitted-t-shirt-mens
 

Life is short, enjoy the ride!

The end

Eric
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« Reply #53 on: May 16, 2018, 05:41:36 PM »

Thanks for sharing, Eric!  I enjoyed your trip.
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« Reply #54 on: May 16, 2018, 06:29:55 PM »

I truly LOVE my GTS300ie Super, but man oh man, that 946 is just SOOOOOOOOO sexy !!
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« Reply #55 on: May 16, 2018, 06:37:33 PM »

Thanks for sharing, Eric!  I enjoyed your trip.

Thank you but my trip was kind of anticlimactic with the weather. But sometimes the definition of an adventure is disaster that worked out. 

I truly LOVE my GTS300ie Super, but man oh man, that 946 is just SOOOOOOOOO sexy !!


Your 300ie is the bomb and I sure wish my 946 had your motor!
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« Reply #56 on: May 16, 2018, 07:21:50 PM »

Thanks for sharing, Eric!  I enjoyed your trip.

Thank you but my trip was kind of anticlimactic with the weather. But sometimes the definition of an adventure is disaster that worked out. 

I truly LOVE my GTS300ie Super, but man oh man, that 946 is just SOOOOOOOOO sexy !!


Your 300ie is the bomb and I sure wish my 946 had your motor!
My little Enzo sure does some serious ZOOOOOOMMMMM !!  Your scooter's hot sexy Italian booty with my scooter's engine, a match made in Piaggio heaven :-)
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« Reply #57 on: May 16, 2018, 11:56:54 PM »

Thanks for sharing, Eric!  I enjoyed your trip.

+1 great pics. Hope you can come down to our Rally in Sept.
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« Reply #58 on: May 17, 2018, 03:41:17 AM »

I don't know which is cooler, the pictures or the fact that you own a $10,000 Vespa 155cc AND an $800 Valentino Rossi helmet.  
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« Reply #59 on: May 18, 2018, 04:01:44 AM »

Wonderful ride report and I love your scoot, also fond of your XR1200.

It's funny what sticks out but seeing that photo of your mom on her old Ducati was great.  Things may not have happened as you planned but that makes them all the more memorable.
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